July 31, 2008

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Updated Aug. 12, 2008

LEWISBURG, Pa. — The Samek Art Gallery will mark the 25th anniversary of Bucknell University having an art gallery with the yearlong series, "Peace & Resistance." || Samek Art Gallery director Dan Mills talks about the upcoming season.

The series comprises three major international exhibitions that focus on the work of Yoko Ono, Soviet-era Nonconformist art, and Oswaldo Guayasamin. Lectures, films and other programming will accompany the exhibitions.

The exhibition, "Yoko Ono Imagine Peace Featuring John and Yoko's Year of Peace," will open the Samek Art Gallery exhibition season Aug. 25 through Oct. 8.

Exhibition curator Kevin Concannon, associate professor at the University of Akron's Myers School of Art, will give the lecture, "Yoko Ono: Imagining Peace 1966-2008" on Friday, Aug. 29, at 5 p.m. in Gallery Theatre, followed by the reception in the gallery.

Ideals of peace and love
"The exhibition focuses on the thematic ideals of peace and love," said Dan Mills, curator of the Samek Art Gallery. "It follows the work of Yoko Ono and John Lennon chronologically as solo artists, as a couple in the 1960s, and also Ono's recent interactive solo works."

According to Mills, the exhibition showcases interactive works by Ono that demonstrate her long-standing ambition to involve individuals in the process of achieving peace through the power of imagination. It includes installations designed to help visitors spread the message of love and peace worldwide through the use of stamps, postcards, flashlights and buttons; documentation of the Imagine Peace Tower in Iceland, which was dedicated on Lennon's birthday last year; the international advertising campaign War is Over!; and video and audio clips from 1969-71 including "Bed-In."

Yoko Ono billboard
"We have also commissioned Ono to create a billboard, which will be visible southbound on Rt. 15 just north of Rt. 80, from Sept. 10 to Oct. 9," said Mills.

 "We also are organizing two evenings of film screenings, including 'The U.S. vs. John Lennon' on Sept. 9, and a Yoko Ono film on Sept. 23, both at 7 p.m. in the Gallery Theatre of the Elaine Langone Center."

Yamamoto Peace Paintings
Running concurrently Aug. 25 – Oct. 8 with the Ono exhibition is "Noriko Yamamoto The Peace Paintings," located in the Project Room. Yamamoto has merged Abstract Expressionism with calligraphy to form her own color-saturated and gestural painting style since the 1950s. For this series, ongoing since 2003, Yamamoto introduces two new elements – white over painting and the occasional reproduction of the word Peace. The exhibition is curated by Mills and organized by the Samek Art Gallery.

Established in 1983 as the Center Gallery, the university art gallery was known as the Bucknell Art Gallery from 1999-2001, and named the Samek Art Gallery in 2001 in honor of Edward and Marthann Samek.

Other exhibitions
Other exhibitions scheduled in the Samek Art Gallery are:

Oct. 24 – Dec. 9: "The Space of Freedom: Apartment Exhibitions in Leningrad (1964-1986)" in the main gallery. Visitors to the exhibition, which includes 45 paintings, drawings and prints from the collection of the Museum of Nonconformist Art in St. Petersburg, Russia, will enter a recreated Soviet communal apartment interior. "The Communist Party banned art that didn't conform to the government's edicts," said Mills. "Artists creating in styles not permitted by the government organized short-term exhibitions, lasting a day or even a few hours, in their own communal apartments."

Oct. 24 – Dec. 9: "Collection Focus II: Transformed Spaces/Invented Narratives" in the Project Room. Curated by Tulu Bayar, Bucknell assistant professor of art and art history, the exhibition focuses on important and emerging contemporary artists working in photographic media who transform and create spaces, and invent narratives ranging from mysterious to the mundane. Artists will include Julie Becker, James Casebere, Gregory Crewdson and Abelardo Morell. Organized by the Samek Art Gallery, all works in the exhibition are recent additions to the permanent collection.

Jan. 23 – March 27: "Of Rage and Redemption: The Art of Oswaldo Guayasamin" in the main gallery. The first exhibit of its kind in the United States in more than 50 years, the exhibition showcases the work of the Ecuadorian painter and graphic artist, "which focuses on difficult subjects and evokes strong emotional responses, including the horrors of war, the injustices of inequality and discrimination and the rights of women, children and indigenous peoples," said Mills.

April 10 -28: "Annual Student Art Show" with artworks created in drawing, painting, photography, printmaking and sculpture courses, as well as works created independently.
The Samek Art Gallery is located on the third floor of the Elaine Langone Center. Admission is free. Gallery hours are weekdays 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Thursdays 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.; weekends 1 to 5 p.m., and by appointment. The Gallery is accessible by elevator. For more information about the gallery, call 570-577-3792 or visit http://www.bucknell.edu/x38084.xml.

Contact: Office of Communications